The article “Now I feel like there are limits” is an excellent example of why there isn’t a woman president (front page, March 7). The article focuses on gender, not the potential candidate’s views and capabilities. If I were a woman, I’d be outraged. I’d be outraged because the article puts the focus right where it shouldn’t be. I would want it to be on what I can do, not what gender I am.
Maybe, just maybe, the voters had the collective view that the women in the Democratic race were not good candidates. Period. We need to remember that about 50% of eligible voters are women and apparently the majority of them didn’t think their female sisters passed muster.
There are good women on the national stage who would seem to have the qualifications to be good candidates for president; they just weren’t on the ticket at this time. This year’s candidates were treated with respect and had a fair chance to make their case — they just didn’t. I want my talented daughters and granddaughters to be focused on their character and views and get over the tired rationale that they don’t get something simply because they are women. To do otherwise should cause them justifiable outrage.
Chuck Wanous, Bloomington
• • •
I’m sympathetic to the sadness exhibited in the March 7 news article about the glass ceiling for women becoming president.
As an old white man who held my nose and voted in 2016 for a woman/war criminal for president after the Democratic Party had fraudulently eliminated my preferred candidate, and who also voted for the first all-female Minnesota gubernatorial ticket in the 2018 DFL primary, I’m concerned that Democrats are once again frantically working to manipulate the candidate selection process.
Here’s the rub. According to CNN estimates based on exit polling, 7% of Democratic women voters and 42% of independent women voters chose Trump in 2016.
Until someone can explain to me why so many Democratic and independent women voters preferred an alleged repeat rapist, demonstrated misogynist and foul-mouthed serial liar with no discernible family values and zero experience in public office over the “qualified” woman candidate, I suspect that the alleged glass ceiling may turn out to be just a funhouse mirror.
William Beyer, St. Louis Park
He’s not such a failure after all
A March 10 letter writer dismisses Sen. Bernie Sanders for reminding us he voted against the Iraq war, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Wall Street bailout by saying it’s easy to be against something (“He loses, and his causes do, too”). She faults him for a lack of leadership because he didn’t persuade enough others to deny passage of those bad resolutions.
She might have it exactly backward. Ethical dissent is not measured on her rather black-and-white scale of political success and failure. For any given senator, it is often much harder to stand for ethical principles in the face of popular sentiment that favors an immoral policy. That he couldn’t persuade others to follow their consciences is not his failure, it is theirs.
Bob Worrall, Roseville
LINE 3 PIPELINE
My public comment is a ‘no’
Enbridge’s proposed Line 3 tar sands pipeline would travel more than 300 miles across northern Minnesota, crossing more than 200 streams and other water bodies. Nearly 80 miles of its route would cross wetlands (“Enbridge pipeline gets draft permits,” Feb. 28).
Imagine driving 75 miles from Minneapolis to Collegeville — and the whole time you’re driving through wetlands. That’s how many wetlands Line 3 would cross, and then some. Minnesota rules say pipeline routes should avoid wetlands, streams and areas with high water tables. Line 3’s proposed route fails, and fails spectacularly, to meet that standard.
Enbridge has applied to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) for Line 3’s water crossings permit, technically called a “Section 401 permit,” as required by the federal Clean Water Act. The MPCA is taking public comments through April 3. Enbridge has admitted in state filings that it can’t build the new Line 3 and meet all of Minnesota’s water quality standards.
The MPCA’s mission is to “protect and improve the environment and human health.” The agency’s decision should be a slam dunk “no” to Line 3.
Scott Russell, Minneapolis
Actually, make it 1,000 feet
There have been a few opinions published here recently that miss the boat when considering wake restrictions (“Don’t regulate our lakes away,” Readers Write, March 7, and “Responsible wakes on the lakes,” Opinion Exchange, March 5). Boating wakes are no longer what they used to be — nowadays they can be huge and dangerous, caused by “wake boats” that use large ballast tanks in the boat’s stern to create “perfect” huge waves and allow wake surfing. The typical wake produced by water skiing is minor in comparison. Further, these waves carry on across the lake for much longer than any others, unquestionably for 500 to 1,000 feet and crash on both close and distant shores with severe effects, such as: substantial shoreline damage due to erosion, fallen trees and undermined foundations; threat of injury to swimmers, especially to young children; a decline in hatching of loon and kingfisher eggs; churning up the lake bottom and disruption to anglers; damage to other boats and docks.
Recently proposed state legislation considering a limit for wake surfing within 200 feet of shore is woefully insufficient to mitigate the damage. On our lake we have used a 300-foot limit during high water, and it has done little to protect the shoreline. Currently it is illegal to operate a boat in such a way that it endangers public safety, damages shoreline, harasses wildlife or churns up the bottom. So, the problem may also be enforcement.
A distance of up to 1,000 feet is what is needed, or better yet, legislation to prevent boat ballasting or wake enhancement altogether.
John Graber, Minneapolis
Bike around before moving forward
The Minneapolis City Council repeatedly touts decisionmaking regarding parking requirements amid increased density based on their prediction that an increased amount of the city’s population will rely on bicycles for transportation (“Mpls. bets on walking, biking, transit,” March 10). This is a fine idea, and many additional bike paths have been created within the city. But if the council uses increased biking as a rationale for decisions, they must also ensure bike paths are cleared and separated from pedestrians, especially in highly used areas. In addition, when infrastructure construction disrupts bikes paths, bikers cannot be expected to use hazardous detours that combine bike and car traffic; more forethought must be used when redirecting bike traffic.
I challenge City Council members to get on their bikes today and try to get around the city. Try biking along the Greenway, River Road, Minnehaha Creek and the lakes. Then you will understand the frustration faced by bike commuters and recreational bikers as bike paths are ill-maintained and unexpectedly torn up and replaced with risky detours. With a lack of maintenance, Minneapolis bike paths are not a realistic alternative for most of the population and you are not doing your job if you base your decisions upon this faulty rationale.
Judith E. Forbes, Minneapolis
We want to hear from you. Send us your thoughts here.